(There was an entry “DOT SP 7945” in the Authorization column of the Declaration covering UN 1956 Compressed gas, n.o.s. What is this number?)

Q.
On the declaration covering 1 fibreboard box X 1.2kg PI200 of UN 1956 Compressed gas, n.o.s. (Bromotrifluoromethane and Nitrogen) Div. 2.2 had “DOT SP 7945” entered in the Authorization column. What does this mean? And, what should we do?  (31 Dec 15)

A.
On the internet, access US Department of Transportation (www.dot.gov) website. In the Search window on the right hand top corner, enter “DOT SP 7945” which will take you to the website of PHMSA (Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration) and on the top of the Special Permit list you will find SP 7945. If you click the headline, the full Special Permit 7945 can be seen and can be downloaded. Unlike other countries, the US impose very strict rule on the specification and quality of cylinders, and SP 7945 is one of them.

When you read SP 7945, you will find in Item 10 “Modal Requirements” at the end of Page 5 that: “A current copy of this special permit must be carried aboard each cargo vessel, aircraft or motor vehicle used to transport packages covered by this special permit. The shipper must furnish a current copy of this special permit to the air carrier before or at the time the shipment is tendered.” Further at the top of the following Page 6, Item 6 “Compliance”, there is a warning that: “failure by a person to comply with any of the stipulations may result in suspension or revocation of this special permit and penalties prescribed by law”. Thus, a current copy of SP 7945 must be attached to the Declaration. For all cargo destined to the United States the shipper must follow US State Variation USG-01 where compliance with all the stipulations of 49CFR is mandatory.

Furthermore, the airlines are also obligated to abide with 49CFR as stated in the beginning of US State Variation USG-13. In addition, USG-13 (a) states that the airline must recheck whether the shipper has followed 49CFR before accepting any shipment and warns that shipper’s approval does not equate to a carrier approval. A double check by the airline is mandatory.


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